Department of Biotechnology G. Among seventeen endophytic fungi, only four distinct fungal morphotype were cultured to examine their antimicrobial properties and phytochemical analysis. Antimicrobial activity was evaluated for crude ethyl acetate extracts against pathogenic microorganism such as Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella typhimurium, Candida albicans, Rhizoctonia solani, Cladosporium herbarum using an agar diffusion assay. The fungal crude extract did not show any activity against fungal pathogen such as R.
Natural Product Sources Fungi Estimates suggest that several million fungi inhabit our planet, yet only a fraction of these species have been described let alone examined for secondary metabolites.
This situation presents a unique and exciting opportunity to identify novel organic compounds made by fungi that are capable of improving human health.
We obtain fungi from a wide variety of substrates including soils, plants, sediments, insects, and animals. The breadth of samples we examine for fungi has expanded greatly thanks in large part to the participation of our citizen team of citizen scientists.
Our microbial collection consists of over 10, isolates obtained from samples collected across the United States. All of these fungi have been grown in the lab and extracts prepared that contain their unique secondary metabolites. We and our collaborators use this one-of-a-kind resource in combination with biological assays to identify new bioactive compounds that have promising drug-like activities.
Researchers interested in screening compounds and extracts from our library should contact the director for more information. Bacteria Bacteria grow in nearly every conceivable environment on earth.
One group of microbes that are of considerable interest to our laboratory is the consortium of bacteria that reside in and on mammals.
We have explored bacteria from the human mouth and recently expanded this to include bacteria from other mammalian sources. We employ an opportunistic sampling approach for obtaining bacteria from wild mammalian sources. The carcasses of recently deceased mammals are a virtual microbial treasure trove containing thousands of bacteria, many of which are new to science.
Disease Targets Cancer Cancers of all kinds continue to plague humans. Historically, natural products have played a tremendous role in the development of therapies for treating cancers and we believe that the scientific community has only just scratched the surface when it comes to mining this resource for new cancer-fighting compounds.
We are particularly interested in the development of targeted therapies for difficult-to-treat or yet untreatable cancers including childhood cancers, pancreatic cancers, triple negative breast cancers, and glioblastomas.
Our approach to addressing these therapeutic needs involves the use of innovative methods for screening and testing natural products in phenotype-driven assays that highlight the unique genomic defects within each cancer subtype.
This targeted approach is beginning to yield compounds with promising activity profiles, as well as providing insights into the molecular targets suitable for inhibiting cancers of diverse origins.
Microbial Infections We are using our natural products library to identify compounds active against a range of deadly infectious bacteria and fungi including Acinetobacter spp. We utlize assays geared toward uncovering natural products that could be used to combat persistent bacterial and fungal infections such as those caused by recurring and antibiotic-resistant microorganisms.
Two ways that we have approached this problem are through the inhibition of biofilms, as well as synergistic enhancement of antibiotic activities.
Parasitic Diseases We are in the process of completing preliminary studies that will enable our group to screen for new compounds that inhibit a variety of human parasites. These tests will be completed in early and further details are expected to be released later this year.
Collaborative Studies Making meaningful inroads to the discovery of new drugs requires cross-disciplinary groups of researchers. Our research group consists of students, postdoctoral fellows, and researchers with diverse expertise in chemistry, natural products, biology, and microbiology.
We routinely work with experts in the fields of mycology Andrew Millermedicinal chemistry Doug Frantzcancer pharmacology Susan Mooberry and April Risingerfreshwater ecology Mark Luttentonand microbiology Brad Stevenson.
Lin Du - Postdoctoral Fellow.Our preliminary efforts show that about 50%, of over 80 Annonaceous species screened, are significantly bioactive and are worthy of fractionation; thus, this class of compounds can be expected to continue to grow at an exponential rate in the future, provided that financial support for such research efforts can be found.
the decline in isolation of new bioactive natural products and the rise of high-throughput screening, trends that have greatly impacted drug discovery.
Our laboratory focuses on the discovery of new Preliminary biological evaluations of some of our bioactive molecules. In this study, high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry was used to assess the results of bioactive compound screening from natural products using immobilized enzyme magnetic beads.
The booming market for nutraceuticals – natural products with bioactive compounds – is mostly based on plants and land-based animals. NIWA is testing thousands of samples of .
demand for natural products increased in recent times presence of natural bioactive phytochemicals7. The quality of phytoconstituents are assessed by preliminary phytochemical screening, chemo- profiling and marker compound analysis using modern analytical techniques. The Thin layer chromatography (TLC) method is an.
Phenotypic screens to identify novel bioactive natural products have been used previously; for example, fumagillin was isolated from fungal metabolites, and this compound induced endothelial cell rounding and inhibited angiogenesis (Ingber et al., ).